November was mildest in more than 150 years
IT WAS the warmest November for more than 150 years -- a complete reversal of the weather a year ago.
This time last year, the country was already in the grips of the first of that winter's big freezes with temperatures at minus 10C by night, and children celebrating school closures by sledding down snowy hills.
However, Ireland's topsy-turvy weather could not be more different this year.
Provisional data from Met Eireann shows that the month was exceptionally mild, and recorded the warmest November at the weather station in Dublin's Phoenix Park since records began in 1855.
The average temperature at the Phoenix Park across the autumn was a mild 12C.
Meanwhile, the weather station at Valentia in Co Kerry recorded its warmest autumn since its records began in 1869 at 12.7C.
It was a similar picture at Casement in Co Dublin where, with an average top temperature of 12C, it was the warmest autumn since records began 50 years ago.
Temperatures around the country were between 2C and 3.5C above normal.
Sunshine and rainfall levels for November were also above normal for some parts of the country.
Western parts of the country were wetter than normal, although the east managed to escape a repeat of the deluges that led to flooding in October.
Meanwhile, the first day of December is worlds away from the freezing cold of a year ago. Today will be bright with sunny spells and top temperatures of 5C to 9C. There will be some showers along the south, west and north coasts.
A Met Eireann spokesman said the outlook for the coming days was the "usual mixture" of cold and rain.
"It's very mixed but we are not getting any significant cold, although there will be some frost at night," he added.
Temperatures tonight will drop to zero or minus 2C with a sharp frost and a chance of icy patches.